The Dreaded First Chip
Road construction debris are the most likely culprit.
When your vehicle is brand new, no matter who you are, you baby it. You try to keep it clean for as long as you can, keep the inside fresh with that new car smell, and you try your best to avoid the first scratch or dent. When the first one comes, it is a gutting feeling. Even worse, it could easily be avoided with one simple preventative measure: Self Healing Paint Protection!
This topic has been on our minds lately, especially with lots of construction happening around Victoria. If you ever drive the Malahat or the Coquihalla highways in the winter, you know that even without a construction project on the go they are covered in dirt, gravel, and large stones used in the regular de-icing these overpasses go though each week. Vehicle’s constantly come into the shop with hood, fender, windshield, and mirror damage caused by stone chips and gravel spray coming off of construction areas. The only thing that makes drivers feel worse is when they realize they could have avoided it altogether by using this simple protection film.
Self Healing Paint Protection Film
Self healing paint protection films have three key advantages:
- The clear coat finish self-heals when scratched and is resistant to cracks, yellowing and staining.
- It is virtually invisible to the naked eye.
- It shields your vehicle against rocks, road debris, winter salt and sand with year-round protection.
These films have multiple layers, each one serving a different purpose, and with a top coat that is able to smooth out surface stains and scratches when heat is applied. The top 0.5 mils low surface energy urethane clear coat employs elastomeric polymers designed to eliminate staining, contamination and surface scratches. The 6 mils polyurethane layer beneath that is formulated to have excellent memory when stretched over the vehicle’s surface. The 1.6 mils ultra clear acrylic copolymer is specially formulated to have good tack on the painted surface and rework ability and removability.
The rework-ability and tack allow our installers to make a factory quality install with a very quick turnaround, but it is really that top-most layer that you will be most interested in. When the film is scratched or scuffed, all you need to do is apply a mug of hot water over the effected area and give it a wipe. The film’s polymers will smooth out and restore the shine you saw in the original application. It is truly magical when you see it for the first time.
What happens if the protective film is scratched?
Self Healing Paint Protection Film uses a special polymer in its clear coat that flows even though it is cured. This allows the clear coat to find its natural level again after being disturbed on the surface when you apply heat. The time for a scratch to heal depends on the severity of the scratch and the ambient temperature. Minor scratches usually heal in one hour at room temperature (20°C). In warmer climates, healing time will be shorter. The healing process can be accelerated at any time by pouring hot water over the scratched area.
This is a truly remarkable product. Believe it or not, you will almost be hoping for a little scratch the first time you drive your freshly wrapped vehicle through a construction site, just so you can watch it heal before your eyes under a splash of hot water. The future really is here!
To speak to an expert about high quality protective films for your vehicle, click here – we’re always happy to chat.